I did it. I went to Z’s house on Thursday, and stayed from 1pm to 7pm. I went outside, and didn’t panic or get itchy and strange. I didn’t decide to bail out at the last moment to spend the day reclined in bed, drinking tea and feeling sorry for myself. In fact, I even went so far as to wash my face properly, tie my hair back and sculpt a quiff out of my fringe, put on eyeliner and lipstick, and choose something nice to wear.
Strange things have been happening.
I’ve been remembering to take my pills on time. I’ve had showers and baths, and kept up a skincare routine. When I had my hair done on Friday, I let my hairdresser take my hair shades darker to a deep plum colour and cut a load of layers in. Afterwards, I sat in the coffee shop on the corner on my own, reading my emails and drinking a mocha, then I mooched around the shops for a while before calmly going back home, showing off my hair and then tidying my bedroom. I’ve eaten salad.
I admit, I did get a little tetchy at Z’s; I always do. Bless her, she’s a lovely girl but she can be very single-minded (she’s bipolar), and there’s only so long I can admire her excessive make-up collection before I want to do something else. Personality-wise, we don’t really work as friends. I’m laid-back and want a nice, quiet life, whereas she’s always wanting to be occupied and busy, changing plans and planning things. I love her to bits, I really do; but I don’t think BPD and bipolar work very well together.
Z painted my nails a deep crimson colour and we spent half an hour chasing tiny gems around the table, trying to get them to stick on top. It ended up looking ridiculous and I picked it all off later on, but I appreciated the girly time. I don’t get anywhere near enough of it. Part of my problem is that I distrust women; I always have done. I don’t think there’s any real basis to the lack of trust – unless you count the bitches in school – and it’s something I’ve tried working on in the past but always failed. I simply feel more comfortable in male company.
We smoked a shisha, and I bought some make-up off Z. I really can’t afford it – I’m struggling with money at the moment – but I needed the boost and she needed the money.
I think I will always find friendship somewhat unnatural, and something I need to work on. Still, I’m taking Thursday as a good sign.
I’m proud of how well I coped with Friday. I’ve been feeling anxious about my hair, and whether I can justify spending almost £80 on a cut and colour; it’s a lot of money. As I mentioned, I’ve been awful at budgeting recently and I’m putting it down to all the stress of the neurology appointment and late-night binges. I don’t often go crazy spending money, but when I do… I stress a lot. I hate owing money and being in any sort of debt, and I really hate not having anything spare in case I need something during the week. It serves me entirely right for spending £100 on weed really; I shouldn’t have done that. Still, it was an investment. That’s grown-up and responsible, right?
Still, I did well. Chatted happily in the hairdressers and didn’t feel too exposed or aware of myself, and sitting on my own with a coffee is a small miracle in itself; I even went upstairs. I carried a tray – something I haven’t felt confident enough to do for a long time – and I think I even smiled at a woman reading a book across from me. The bus journey home was actually a good experience – I like people-watching – and I didn’t even panic when my mother suddenly decided she wanted me to order a million things for her online shortly before I was due to get a taxi to S’s house for the weekend.
You know what?
I feel good. I feel positive. I’ve missed that feeling, and that’s the cruellest aspect of depression; it makes you forget just how amazing life can feel sometimes. There’s a reason why I’m still here, and that’s because I like living and I know that sometimes the world is a wonderful place if you just let it be. My brain just doesn’t always agree.
S is also entirely skint, so we skipped the usual Friday-at-pub-then-takeaway routine and I took a load of ingredients to his house to attempt cooking something amazing. I’m a good cook, but for some reason I can’t function well in his kitchen. The oven is old and bad-tempered, and I always end up undercooking everything. I tried to make a cheese and vegetable tart, but it turned into two oddly-shaped pasties and a pile of goo in the bin. Oh well. S was good-natured about it, thank god.
We went for a walk on Saturday afternoon, along the field nearby and around the ‘nature reserve’ (really a pile of scrub and some paths), holding hands and chatting. It’s a long time since I felt up to walking any real distance, but I felt really good about it. I liked being outside in the cold, clear air, with the sun just starting to set and the man I love wrapping his arm around my shoulders and lighting the last of a joint for me as we sat on top of a small hill and watched the sun go down.
I didn’t sleep well last night, because I missed him. I should be too old for this, but he really does fill my every waking – and often sleeping – moment. I sleep wonderfully when we’re together, it’s the only time I get real, deep sleep and wake up feeling okay. Waking up next to his sleepy, dopey face is the best feeling in the world. Whenever we sleep together, he wakes me up with a kiss and a hug, without fail. I can’t possibly have a bad day when it begins like that.